Archive for November, 2018

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Reviewing Sri Lanka’s Recent Test Performances … Batting Issues

November 15, 2018

Andrew Fidel FErnando, in ESPNCricinfo, 13 November 2018, where the title is ” Four batsmen who must step up in Sri Lanka’s hour of need”

If Sri Lanka have a half-decent Test record over the past 14 months – and they do, winning six and losing only three of their last 13 Tests – it is largely the work of their bowlers.

Take the matches in the UAE last year, for example. In the first Test, Sri Lanka collapsed in the second innings to leave Pakistan needing only 136 for victory, before Rangana Herath drew on his famed reserves of cricketing fortitude and body-slammed Pakistan for what felt like the millionth time in his career, taking six wickets as they crashed to 114 all out. In the next Test, the day-nighter in Dubai, Sri Lanka were all out for 96 in their second innings, before the bowlers held it together through a tough period in which they were forced to contend with a dew-moistened ball, then snuffed out the Pakistan chase when the match resumed the next afternoon.

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The Sri Lankan Innings at Pallekelle

November 15, 2018

Andew Fidel Fernando, in ESPNcricinfo.com,

England 285 (Curran 64, Buttler 63, Dilruwan 4-61) and 0 for 0 (Leach 0*, Burns 0*) trail Sri Lanka 336 (Silva 85, Karunaratne 63, de Silva 59) by 46 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

A graceful Dhananjaya de Silva 59, and a watchful 63 from Dimuth Karunaratnegave the Sri Lanka innings some early substance, but both those turns were outshone by what was arguably the innings of the series so far – a resolute 85 from Roshen Silva that carried Sri Lanka 46 runs into the lead.

Almost as impressive as his score, and the 174 balls he batted, was the fact that he forged such fruitful partnerships with the tail, coaching them through the tough periods. The last three partnership in Sri Lanka’s innings were worth 125 – Roshen scoring 60 of those runs. Soon after Roshen had arrived, Sri Lanka had been six-down and still 120 runs behind. Given the extremely challenging nature of this surface, and the variety in England’s attack, it was a monumental recovery.

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Lahiru Kumara rapped on the knuckles and ankles

November 13, 2018

Bipin Dani, in Daily Mirror, 13 November 2018, where the title is Heavy fine imposed on Kumara for breaking curfew”

Sri Lankan fast bowler Lahiru Kumara has not only been axed from the squad on disciplinary grounds but is has been heavily fined too, it is learnt here. This was according to highly placed sources close to the team management. Kumara broke the team curfew just two days prior to the Galle Test and was replaced by another fast bowler, Dushmantha Chameera.

Players are supposed to be in their rooms before 11.00 pm on non-match days. On match-days, they can’t be out of team hotel after 10.00 pm. It could not be verified if and who Kumara, who came to team hotel after 11.00pm on November 4 had met. “He (Lahiru Kumara) is yet to pay the fine which was imposed by the team’s Fine Committee”, sources said. Read the rest of this entry ?

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Fare Thee Well Rangana

November 12, 2018

Item in Daily Mirror, 10 November 2018, with this title Rangana’s swansong and Lanka’s future in spin bowling”

When Rangana Herath takes the field for one last time in Galle today, there will be tributes for the gentleman cricketer who has an unblemished record on and off field. Sri Lanka will host England in a three-match Test series but Herath will only play the first Test starting on November 6, thereby ending a career spanning nearly two decades.

With 430 wickets and counting, Herath can walk off the field with his head held high. He has achieved what no other left-arm bowler has done in the history of the game. With five more wickets in his last appearance, he will become number seven in the all-time list of highest wicket takers, led by our own Muttiah Muralidaran (800). It is a phenomenal achievement for a late bloomer. Among them are 34 five wickets hauls out of which 26 came off in home conditions. Read the rest of this entry ?

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Accolades Aplenty for Rangana Herath

November 7, 2018

Lankan cricket greats witness Herath’s farewell Test

Sri Lankan cricket legends Arjuna Ranatunga, Muthiah Muralitharan and Sidath Wettimuny along with other former cricket board officials were present at the historic Galle International Cricket Stadium to witness veteran spinner Rangana Herath’s farewell Test appearance on the first day of the first cricket Test against England yesterday. In fact Muralitharan also made his final Test appearance at this same venue eight years ago. Seated from left: Arjuna Ranatunga, Muthiah Muralitharan, Kushil Gunasekara, Nishantha Ranatunga and Sidath Wettimuny.

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Bloodletting in Cricket Australia Management Continues

November 7, 2018

ONE: Vipin Darwade, in CricketAge, 7 November 2018

Cricket Australia announced on Wednesday that High Performance chief Pat Howard will leave his role next week as the fallout from a scathing cultural review into the governing body continues. Howard, who has been in the role since 2011, had intended to stay until the Ashes tour of England next year, CA announced last month, a week before releasing the Longstaff review. “While Pat Howard has previously made clear his intentions not to renew his contract next year, it has been decided to bring forward his departure which will take effect next week after a handover,” CA said in a statement.

Belinda Clark has agreed to take on the role of Interim EGM, Team Performance until Pat’s permanent replacement is announced in the new year.

Kieran McMillan will step into the Interim EGM, Community Cricket role until such time that Belinda returns to her post.” Read the rest of this entry ?

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Day One of Galle Test Match elongs to Foakes

November 6, 2018

Andrew Fidel Fernando

Ben Foakes was largely in the team for his wicketkeeping. That, at least, was one of the arguments. But following a morning session in which England’s more highly rated batsmen tangled themselves up in aggressive strokes and left the side at 103 for 5, it was debutant Foakes whose steady hand raised them gradually out of the ditch they had been in at lunch.

Foakes used the crease, skipped out to meet the spinners, and he swept as well, but he did each of these in a much more measured fashion than the men who batted above him. Thanks to him, and the men who batted well in his company – Jos Buttler, Sam Curran and Adil Rashid – England can even claim to have grasped a position of strength in this match. A score of 321 for 8 at stumps on day one is not shabby, in a Galle Test. Foakes himself was not out, 13 runs short of what would be a plucky century in his first Test innings.

Foakes

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